chatbot, chatterbot

What is a chatbot ?

A chatterbot (also known as a talkbot, chatbot, Bot, chatterbox, Artificial Conversational Entity) is a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. Such programs are often designed to convincingly simulate how a human would behave as a conversational partner, thereby passing the Turing test. Chatterbots are typically used in dialog systems for various practical purposes including customer service or information acquisition. Some chatterbots use sophisticated natural language processing systems, but many simpler systems scan for keywords within the input, then pull a reply with the most matching keywords, or the most similar wording pattern, from a database.

A chatbot is an artificial intelligence computer software program developed to simulate intelligent conversation through written or spoken text. in it’s basic form a chatterbot (chat bot) takes a written text input from a user and match it with the program’s database to output a sentence which forms chatbots reply to user input, thus keeping the conversation going, some chatbot programs uses speech recognition, animations etc. for a better virtual user experience

So, why a chatbot ?

One thing it’s fun, chatterbots today have both commercial and educational values, chatbots can be used for information exchange with a customer in commercial websites/programs to teach children grammar, and other subjects through a interface using voice, animation, etc. but all chatbots have one ultimate goal, that is to win the Turing test, which is a test for detecting the best chatbot which can disguise itself with the best human like interaction, so by implementing Artificial Intelligence logic codes, real time analysis and learning, a chatterbot could be made like a HAL (2001 Space Odyssey) SUNNY (I, Robot) or GERTY (Moon) , and that’s what our dream is 🙂

Build your own chatbot!

Talking to a chatbot can be a lot of fun, and if you have the desire, dedication and skills to create, maintain and manage your own chatbot, you can do it. Whether you choose a fully stand-alone “virtual companion”, or take on the challenge of creating your own web-based chatbot, there are several options available to you, the prospective new botmaster, for creating a new chatbot. Nevertheless, first of all you have to choose between a stand-alone chatbot application, and a web-based chatbot.

Stand-alone or web-based chatbot?

The “stand-alone” application, where the chatbot runs on a single computer, integrates mostly some sort of system interface, allowing your chatbot to control certain aspects and functions of your computer, such as playing media files, or retrieving documents. It usually also has a graphical component built in, as well, in the form of an avatar (often female) that enhances interaction, thus improving user’s experience.

In general, the stand-alone chatbot has the advantage that it is simple to install and use, has an engaging graphical interface and an audio component including speech recognition.

However, such a bot is not “your own”, though there are certain degrees of configuration that help to personalise your bot. Besides, for the most part, these applications are not free, though most have a “demo” version.

The “web-based” solution, which runs on a remote server, is generally able to be reached by the general public through a web page. It constitutes a web page with a chatbot embedded in it, and a text form is the sole interface between the user (you) and the chatbot. Any “upgrades” or improvements to the interface are solely the option and responsibility of the botmaster.

In general, the web-based chatbot has the advantage for you to have control over behavior, personality, and (free) hosting, though there are “premium” options available and personalization of content.

However, web based bots are not as easy to set up as a stand-alone chatbot application. Setting up a web-based chatbot requires at least minimal experience with HTML, JavaScript and Artificial Intelligence Markup Language (AIML). Additionally, any sort of “fancy” features, such as Text To Speech, or an animated avatar, would have to be created and integrated into your chatbot’s page, and certain features, such as voice recognition, are either unavailable, or are severely limited.

Learn how to create your own chatbot

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